Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Legislating in haste - a dangerous step?

The Scottish Government have today announced their proposals to combat sectarianism in Scottish football, with a view to getting the legislation in place before the new season starts at the end of July.

I'm always pretty skeptical about legislation which is drafted in haste. Experience shows that it usually results in the laws being badly drafted, and need to be revisited within a couple of years. The good old Dangerous Dogs Act is the classic example of this.

The devil will be in the detail, but what concerns me is the notion of a new offence of "abuse." This will have to be very carefully worded, otherwise the spectre of fans being arrested for shouting at the referee or opposing players could well be rising.

I welcome the moves, though I am doubtful still about how much legislation will help the situation.

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